The European Commission 2020 Work Programme – the transport priorities concentrate on modern and clean mobility

The current von der Leyen Commission, in office since the 1 December 2019, has a clear priority project in its 2020 Work Programme concentrating on green development and emission-free transport. Greening activities and carbon neutrality are connected to every sector through a European Green Deal, the programme for green development. The Green Deal is a roadmap for making EU’s economy sustainable. The goals for the future are ambitious, and transport plays a key role in minimising the carbon footprint.

Multimodal transport and pan-European mobility network

One of the essential projects for transport sector is to increase combining different means of transport and to introduce more options for mobility. Especially rail and waterborne transport need a reform. The priority for aviation sector is the Single European Sky project, that has been launched to significantly reduce emissions in European aviation. Road infrastructure in Europe will be reformed, and the Trans-European Transport Network and its extension TEN-T is significant in the reform process.

Digitalisation and automation

The latest smart technology makes it possible to have a positive impact on, for example, levels of traffic and emissions. Different technologies will have a more central role within the trans-European transport network. Digitalisation permits mobility to be considered as a service. Artificial intelligence will come visibly in to transport sector, and digital applications and gadgets will be used to develop the transport network.

Revision of the Energy Taxation Directive

Alongside with low-carbon and clean fuels entering the market, the pricing of transport must be revised. Enough affordable options should be available in the market in order to encourage the transition to the use of cleaner vehicles in the whole EU. Revision of the Energy Taxation Directive is a project that will be carried out to reach the objectives of 2030 and the carbon neutrality by 2050. In addition, the toll systems within EU, such as the Eurovignette directive, will be revised.

Environmentally friendly fuels to access the market

The Commission has long promoted introduction of low-emission fuels, but Green Deal accelerates the entry on the market of these renewable options. The object is to install a million charging points for electric cars and refueling stations for low-emission vehicles within the EU territory by 2025, when the number of low-emission cars is expected to rise to about 13 million.

The Mobility Package

In recent years, negotiations on the Mobility Package have been high on the agendas of the European Parliament, the Commission and the Council of the EU. The Mobility Package I deals with topics such as access to the road haulage market and access to the profession for passenger and freight transport operators, driving and rest time rules relating to professional drivers, as well as regulations concerning posted workers in the transport sector. With the Mobility Package, regulations concerning commercial freight and passenger transport will be harmonised, and control requirements will be improved. For instance, the return of the vehicle used in transportation to its country of registration and drivers’ weekly rest time rules remain issues of primary importance on the Mobility Package.